I’ve been thinking a bit about what I put out into the world- blogging, videos, research, anything really- and how to deal with looking back at past work, and (often) cringing, because current me would do it better/in more detail/from a different perspective. While some things you can go back and edit, squirrel away behind a larger back catalog, or just ignore, others you can’t, and you have to accept that they’re always going to be out in the world. With that in mind, I came up with a couple of goals for projects, that I believe should be true across the board:
- Make the best project that you can, in the capacity that you have to make it at the time, without overreaching. It’s not to say that stretching your limits, or trying new things isn’t important (or shouldn’t be the point), but if you aren’t a master in a certain field, tool, or method, that’s okay. You don’t have to be a master at something to work on it, and you don’t have to play at one to be taken seriously and do good work.
- Make an effort to work on long term projects with a consistent style and format as early as you can. If you’re trying to start a blog, publishing music, or another long term project, early cohesion in how you present your work, with a plan for the future, can help you grow as time goes on, without looking back at branding or design choices and feeling that they’ve become silly.
- If you want to start a project, take enough time to plan it, batch material, and plan for the long term sustainability of continuing it, and then take the jump. It’s easy to fall into the trap of dreaming, planning, and creating work that grows dust on a shelf without publishing it. And to run yourself ragged to put out work that you’re producing because it’s day X, and you decided that you would arbitrarily have that be the day your something must be done. Take enough time for planning that you can make a system that works and long enough plan to buy yourself some working time, then jump in, with the understanding that it’s okay to take more time if it’s needed. Your audience will thank you.